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Types of Buildings—Distribution of Pueblo Culture—Range of Dual Design on Pottery—Symbolism—Domestic and Food Animals—Preservation of Ancient Ruins—Summary of Work


It was found that in few of the pueblos south of the Jettyto Valley examined by the Museum-Gates party of 1901 was there any care taken to locate in an inaccessible or defensible position. The care was rather to settle near the water supply, at a sufficient elevation merely to overlook the fields or to furnish a practicable site.

As a rule, the plans of the fifty-five ruins examined are of the ordinary rectangular type, offering little worthy of remark. The groups in the White Mountain region, however, which show in part circular plans, and some of the ruins of the Canyon Butte group, which approach this type, are interesting in connection with the range and affiliations of the widespread clans who employed a style of decoration on gray and red pottery that may be called the dual style, which will be discussed later (p. 354).


Last winter the writer presented a paper before the Anthropological Society of Washington, giving a summary of the field work of the

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Museum-Gates expedition of 1901. In discussing the paper President W. H. Holmes characterized the Pueblo culture by saying that it was a great unit with much diversity in detail, fading off into but not connecting with the areas to the west, north, and east, save perhaps in case of a limited class of ancient earthenware decorated with color found in the States of Mississippi, Arkansas, and Louisiana; but on the south there is strong evidence that it connects with the art of northern Mexico and to some degree with the great culture centers of the southern plateau of Mexico. President Holmes said that the various ceramic groups were largely the result of local environment, and to some extent to the culture of peoples arriving in that environment, but the culture over the whole Pueblo area has been to some extent unified.

A few years ago the writer made a study of the art of pottery making carried on at the pueblo of Hano, on the first or east Hopi mesa. It was strikingly brought out in the course of this study that the environment for potter's materials is quite extended. For instance, one desirable clay was brought from the ancient quarry of Sikyatki, about 5 miles away, another from 10 miles or so, common clay from the partings in the mesa just below the pueblo, another clay of different character from some other place, and besides these four varieties, kaolin was brought from a long distance. Experiments were also made with clays encountered during journeys, and by mixtures clays were improved or regulated for certain classes of ware, as for the large water ollas which come from the primitive kiln a reddish-brown color. A similar discriminative selection was also observed in regard to the pottery pigments.

It will be seen that the potter's art at Hano is surprisingly complex in the matter of materials, not to speak of the other processes involved before the ware is finished.

So far as has been observed by the writer, the clays of this region as a rule burn to light yellow, or, in other words, it is an environment that would determine yellow pottery. Without doubt the three great types of pottery of the Pueblo region as to color have their origin in the geological environment in localities where the respective conditions obtain, but the decorated ware such as is taken from the ruins and exhibited in our museums stands very far from the beginning. These types have been more or less widely spread over the whole Southwest through the migration of clans. Thus we find gray ware almost exclusively, for instance, at the Scorse Ranch, where the country clays burn from yellow brown to light yellow. Hence kaolinic clays were sought out for use here because gray pottery was the kind sanctioned by custom and must be made even though the end be attained by passing a wash of kaolin over a body of dark color. It seems, therefore, that there is evidence of strong conservatism in the potter's art of the pueblos,

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one which peculiarly belongs to the woman, who Professor O. T. Mason has shown are the originators and zealous perpetuators of many of the primitive arts. While without the evidence of the decorative symbolism and forms of pottery and that of other artifacts found in a ruin, it might not be thought advisable to depend on the color of the ware alone; yet, bearing in mind the strong conservatism of custom, this feature has classificatory value. Speaking now with regard to the art alone, we may provisionally class the pueblo culture in presumable sequence of origin as that of the gray-ware people, the yellow-ware people, and the red-ware people.

The region of gray ware is southern Utah, southern Colorado, northern Arizona, and northern New Mexico, and its range is much more extensive than that of any other class. The surviving people making gray ware are the Zuñi.

The region of yellow ware embraces the Hopi Reservation and the country south to the Lower Gila in the former range of the Hopi; in the southern portion of the region it occurs sparingly and crosses areas of red and gray. Acoma, Sia, and perhaps some other Rio Grande pueblos make ware which falls in this class.

Ancient sites furnishing red ware exclusively are rare. Red ware occurs in connection with gray, polychrome, and other classes. In general, the region embraces the White and Mogollon mountains, portions of the Gila, and has its focus in the Pima-Papago-Mohave country in southern Arizona.


In this connection attention is called to a style of decoration found almost altogether on gray pottery. The design is drawn in hachure and solid color; these areas of decoration being very often complementary, suggesting the idea of duality. (See Plate 31, figs. 3 and 4; Plate 32, figs. 5 and 6, Scorse Ranch ruins, and Plate 51, Canyon Butte Wash ruins.) This design may be seen on the palaces of Mitla, where it occurs in the frets figured by W. H. Holmes. 1 It is believed that this style of decoration may be of importance in determining the range and affiliations of the tribes making use of it. An examination of the pottery of the existing pueblos shows that the dual or hachure design has been perpetuated only at Zuñi, and here also on the surviving representative of the ancient gray ware, still the typical pottery at Zuñi. The ruins of the Zuñi pueblos which flourished at the time of the conquest and the Zuñi ruin of Kintiel, so far as we have observations upon them, show this type of ware and decoration. The ruins south of Zuñi to the Rito Quemado; southwest, embracing the St. Johns-Springerville

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region; Forestdale (see p. 289), in the Apache Reservation; the Tulerosa and Upper San Francisco rivers, etc.; in general, the region south and southwest of Zuñi, with as yet undefined boundaries but manifestly an area of great extent, are of this class. As said by Cushing, the traditions clearly show that the Zuñi stock is made up of two elements, the one preponderating and more virile from the north, and the other from the south, which Cushing seems inclined to connect with the Yuman of the Lower Rio Colorado or the Piman stock. 2 It may be said in passing that a census of the immense collection of modern Zuñi pottery in the U. S. National Museum includes a number of pieces of red ware, principally in form of bowls with polished surface, which remind one strongly of Pima pottery.

Little work has been done on Zuñi archeology, nor is the pueblo unique in this respect; so that the starting points, ancient migration lines, or stopping places on the way from the north or south are yet to be worked out. Perhaps this hint as to the dual and hachure design may serve as a clew in the further prosecution of this research, which presents only one of many problems that await elucidation in that fascinating field, the ancient Southwest.


There remains also much work to be done on the subject of symbolism, and like many other matters connected with the Indians, who are daily losing something of their old life, the time for this study is the present.

A world of symbolism painted on pottery lies beneath the ancient ruins of Arizona, besides that which has already been taken out by responsible and irresponsible parties. Nowhere has symbolism played such important part as in the pueblos of the Hopi group, and nowhere is the study of them so interesting, both on account of the fullness of the material and the relationship to existing peoples who to-day have a living body of symbols. Here is and advantage presented in the study of pueblo archeology over that of other regions in the United States. Representatives of the prehistoric peoples are still living in the region where the ancient clans wandered, preserving in some degree the ancient thought and in less degree the ancient arts. To them we may refer the finds taken from the ground with some reasonable hope of explaining obscure points or of finding clues that will lead to the explanation, whereas in other regions there are many problems that can receive no aid from living tribes.

Nowhere on this continent is there found a greater wealth of symbolism than in the region of the Hopi mesas, among the living as well as among the dead. The expression of this symbolism is also of an

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interesting stage, that of transition from the realistic to the idealistic, and various degrees of growth exhibiting examples of the origin of symbols and their submergence into conventional and geometric forms. The beginning, range, and decay of symbols, as well as the subjects involved, form a fascinating chapter in the history of this region, a history that gives, beyond all in importance, a clew to the thoughts of the pueblo dwellers.

It is hoped in a future paper to present an account of the symbols occurring on objects collected in different localities by the Museum-Gates expedition of 1901, in order to illustrate some of the points mentioned above. The whole subject is too large for the efforts of one person, and perhaps rendering the material accessible to students may be the most valuable result accomplished in this instance. A few of the best specimens showing symbolism are figured on Plates 98 to 101.


A careful search for the bones of animals was maintained in the excavations made in and around the sites examined during the season of 1901. 3 This inquiry was pursued in order to ascertain what animals were used for food and what animals were domesticated by the ancient inhabitants of this region.

As to the first item, the remains show that most of the animals of the region were consumed as food; but, as might be anticipated, bones of the carnivora are much rarer that those of the herbivora, the latter represented by deer and rabbit species, and the former by the fox, coyote, wolf, dog, raccoon, badger, wildcat, and puma, but no bones of the bear were observed. Remains of the beaver and small rodents, and bones of birds, especially the turkey, eagle, hawk, and owl, were noted.

Remains of the dog and turkey were found in nearly every ruin, showing the extent of the domestication of these animals in this region. So far as can be determined, the dog and turkey were the only animals domesticated by the pueblo tribes. It was hoped that light might have been thrown upon the question of domestication of other animals, namely, the deer, 4 and an auchenia (Hama), as affirmed by Cushing from figurines found on the Rio Salado, in southern Arizona. 5 The writer

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has copied numerous pictographs in the valley of the Little Colorado River showing unmistakably the herding of turkeys and of deer by men. It is possible that the scene depicted in the bowl found at Linden (Plate 19) is of this character. In this connection the congeries of small cells adjoining the ruins at Pinedale, in the White Mountains of Arizona, is interesting. Still, the evidence presented so far as to the domestication of other, animals than the dog and turkey is unsatisfactory.

It is hoped that in future excavations in the Southwest all bones of animals may be carefully collected for the sake of the aid they afford to a fuller understanding of the life of the pueblo dwellers.


One of the most depressing features connected with the work in the Pueblo region is the evidence of vandalism and unskilled exploration encountered on almost all of the prehistoric sites. The extent of this devastation can scarcely be realized. No ruin is so obscure or inaccessible that some sheep herder or prospector has not put in some of his tedious hours digging in it.

The settlers of the States and Territories in the Pueblo region from the first were alive to the wonders of the new country and were attracted by the evidences of the former inhabitants. Thus at that time, out of curiosity, many of the ruins were visited; axes, etc., were picked up from the surface, and perhaps a little cursory excavation done, the specimens secured forming household ornaments.

Later, the various governmental explorations called widespread attention to the ruined pueblos of the Southwest, and soon it was found that relics from these pueblos had commercial value. With this entering wedge, the collecting of “relics” became a business, and men traversed the region for the sole purpose of tearing up the ruins for their private gains. Almost every trader either employed Indians to dig or bought all the specimens that Indians brought in at a nominal price, and many were the men who had “collections” for sale. A few of these individuals, profiting by the scientific methods of governmental and institutional explorations, were careful to catalogue and localize the specimens as far as possible at second hand, finding that such data increased the value. To give an idea of the extent of this vandalism and unscientific collection, it may be said that from one town alone luring the past ten years about 20,000 specimens have been shipped; from other neighboring towns, about 7,000 specimens. From the same points during this period about 10,000 specimens have been shipped by scientific exploring parties. The speculative collecting was from Indian reservations, railroad and Government lands.

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These facts have been known for some time, and a bill for the preservation of ancient ruins has been before Congress several terms, but the bill has not been enacted into law. Indirectly, however, Congress has worked for the preservation of the ruins by reservations of public domain, and in a notable instance has preserved the famous ruin called Casa Grande.

In this connection the Interior Department has done yeoman service in hindering, if not preventing, further despoiling of the ruins on governmental lands by instructions to its agents and by sending inspectors into the field for the purpose of warning offenders.

That there was a sentiment among some of the people of the Southwest in favor of the preservation of the ruins is shown by sundry actions taken by legislative bodies and the formation of societies with such end in view. The legislature of Arizona took action some years ago without apparent success. The Arizona Antiquarian Society founded through the efforts of the late Dr. Joshua Miller, of Prescott, endeavors to preserve and to prevent the despoiling of sites of antiquarian interest in the Territory. In New Mexico also the subject is receiving considerable attention.


During the season over 55 ruins were visited, and 18 of these were excavated in a region nearly 200 miles north and south by 70 miles east and west. Some idea of the difficulties encountered, aside from 800 miles of wagon travel, may be gathered when it is known that five of the groups required dry camps, water being hauled considerable distances. The work, however, was quite successful, 2,500 specimens having been collected. In connection with this work, ethnological photographs, data, and specimens were secured from the Apache, Navaho, and Hopi Indians.


1. Archæological Studies Among the Ancient Cities of Mexico, Field Columbian Museum, Anthropological Series, I, No. 1, Chicago, 1897, pp. 248–249.

2. Thirteenth Annual Report of the Bureau of American Ethnology, 1891–92, p.342.

3. Work of this character was begun in 1896, on the Homolobi ruins, and continued in 1897 in connection with environmental studies in the Southwest. See Hough, Environmental Interrelations in Arizona; American Anthropologist, XI, May, 1898, p. 133; and J. W. Fewkes, Twentieth Annual Report of the Bureau of American Ethnology.

4. Nadaillac, Prehistoric America, London, 1885, pp. 205, 219, affirms the domestication of the deer in Colorádo and Arizona.

5. See Dr. Washington Matthews, U. S. A. in Land of Sunshine (now Out West), XII, March, 1900.

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